Saturday, March 19, 2011

The lid

All through the time she had been telling me what I had done wrong -- which dishes, containers and utensils I should have put in which configuration on the dish rack and how I shouldn't have said something particular (a something in particular which I always regret the moment I say it) -- all the time that I was listening to what she was saying and yet continuing with what must have seemed a dumb, persistent, even stubborn disregard for what should have been a self-evident washing up logic, I had been looking every now and then at an upturned lid that was stained with olive oil and the black, viscous remains of balsamic vinegar (which I was intending to avoid trying to wash in this load), and so when, the next day, I was looking for this lid to make a new dressing, I remembered the monologue about my illogical system -- the lid becoming a sign of this illogical system -- and so when it eventually turned up, I shouldn't have been surprised that it was even filthier than I remembered and had to be soaked.

Friday, March 4, 2011

Leaning from a window

She told us during the break that she didn't usually remember her dreams -- and in fact this one seemed less of a dream than the experience of leaning from a window in a tower and looking down where, far below, her husband and the elder of her sons were running on the stone-paved quay by the steep undulations of a dark grey ocean, and chasing a turtle that was moving faster, she remembered thinking, than she ever expected a turtle to move. It was a very specific visual scene, with a minimum of elements, even a minimum of colours. There was nothing at all vague or elusive about it: just a leaning from a window and seeing them running and presumably then pulling her herself back to sit somewhere inside.